Carousel – a word that originated from the Italian garosello and Spanish carosella, meaning Little Battle. It was actually a combat preparation exercise and a cavalry training mechanism that prepared and strengthened riders for actual combat. By the 18th century this formation was adapted as an amusement ride in fairs across Europe.
How apt is it that the adidas talent programme is known as the Talent Carousel. A programme that encourages and enables employees to make cross category and cross functional moves to a different location. A training ground of sorts – that pushes you to test your limits, not just professionally, but also personally; and at the same time throws you into a whirlwind of fun and exploration.
I recently moved from Corporate Communication in Herzogenaurach, Germany to take on the role of Key Account Manager in New York. Oh yes, it was a change alright; both personally and professionally, and what an exciting ride it has been so far.
I wanted to use this post to share five tips that have aided me so far to make sure I don’t get swept away by the speed of the Carousel.
1. It's ok to feel that way
It’s a whole new setting and the pressure to get up to speed can be quite high. I told myself it’s ok to feel lost and overwhelmed, and used that to further propel my curiosity. Tell yourself to keep calm and carry on. I’m making lists, ticking off check boxes, and asking a million questions – need to make sure I’m all geared up.
2. Keep the things that make you comfortable
One of Talent Carousel coaches advised me to make sure that I stick to the routines that made me comfortable. For e.g. I don’t function well without breakfast. So I take the time to cook my favourite morning meal. In Germany I used to use lunch breaks for company sports workouts. In NYC, thanks to the amazing team, and an almost celebrity fitness influencer for a colleague we have our one minute flash workouts. So don’t be surprised if you stop by to see me in my office and I’m planking near my desk.
3. Keep your peeps close
We live in a world of technology. Saying everything is at a press of a button is a redundant statement. Stay connected. Reach out to your near and dear ones. I was also lucky to have a colleague from my previous team move from Germany to NYC around the same time. And the Talent Carousel circle has been a great network to share and care! At the same time, be curious about and open to meeting new people.
4. 90- day plan
Work with your new team and line manager on whatever makes sense for you. My line manager and I have put together a 90 day onboarding plan for me that I regularly check on and amend where needed.
5. Explore and embrace
Lastly, don’t forget to explore and embrace your new surroundings. Every weekend I make it a point to check out a new area, a new restaurant, museum, or exhibition. It’s not going to be long before a new place starts to feel like home.